Employee experience represents an employee’s interaction with their company from the moment they set foot in the office once hired, until the day they walk out the door for the last time.
Employee experience includes everything from the quality of the work they do, to the flexibility they are afforded, to benefits and pay, to how they feel about their co-workers.
So why do we think this new phenomenon will live beyond “fad status” deep into the future? Because right now employers focus on employee engagement, a lagging indicator of the employee experience, without thinking about how they can solve the engagement puzzle.
According to Aon’s 2018 Trends in Global Employee Engagement Report, 73% of employees are still not considered “highly engaged.” In the age of casual offices with stocked kitchens, collaborative spaces and pet-friendly workplaces, how could employees not be “highly-engaged?”
The reality is that often employers don’t look at the basic work functions when assessing engagement and job satisfaction, they go to perks and benefits rather than the work itself. If employers evaluated things like recruiting processes, employee feedback channels and the ability for an employee at any level of the organization to be agile in their problem-solving, employers may find that they need to spend less on snacks and furniture.
Bruce Tulgan of RainMakerThinking identified 8 factors that drive employees’ willingness to take a new job or stay at a current job. These factors often are the most critical to the overall employee experience because they have to do most directly with the actual work. Factors like role and responsibility, supportive management, training and development, flexibility and autonomy are factors that Tulgan has identified as the critical components of a happy, engaged employee who is having a positive experience at work.
Employee experience metrics will endure because they go beyond the perks and encourage employers to take a look at the work-product they offer their employees. How is the collaboration, the career-pathing, the things that truly bring employees into an organization? Those are the factors that contribute to experience more than an Instagram worthy office. If the work is good and hard work is recognized and rewarded, employees will stick around, whether or not there are snacks in the fridge.